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I would like to say my new book The Princess and The Queen is positive and promotes harmony for the mother/daughter-in-law relationship. It offers over twenty years of research on the subject and results from hundreds of discussions surveys and stories. It includes key factors and real information given from real women who shared their stories with me. The book is on Amazon. It will keep giving long after the wedding and can be a resource when having a problem or difficult time with each other.

2 Books in 1 about the Hidden Secrets In the Mother-In-Law and Daughter-In-Law Relationship

The Princess and The Queen by Pamela Reynolds is now published by Blooming Twig Books (www.bloomingtwig.co )

Amazon

It is available on Amazon

This double-sided book (one half for the mother-in-law the other half for the daughter-in-law) answers these questions:

  • Do you know what your mother-in-law or daughter-in-law thinks?
  • How our individualities, environments and life changes affect the relationship.
  • Ideas and techniques to keep the relationship on track.
  • Learn how to solve problems before they appear or increase.
  • You can do a makeover of an existing poor relationship.
  • Uncover the words and actions that improve the relationship.
  • Learn how you manage the interference and changes in a positive way.

This book helps create a happy atmosphere for both the mother-in-law and daughter-in-law.

The book promotes relationship harmony for all women.

When the daughter-in-law/ mother-in-law communicate the families are happy.

The content stories and reflections from the book promote a positive relationship.

Real women discuss their stories.

I began the book as a daughter-in-law and finished it as a mother-in-law. It spans two generations of meaningful research.

Contemplating marriage or married any number of years, this book, The Princess and The Queen, entertains enlightens and is a great Wedding Mother’s Day Birthday or Shower gift.

We all find it so easy to blame others when a relationship fails. If we could read our daughter-in-law’s mind, we would likely find she is blaming us for the uneasy atmosphere.
The truth is, both parties sabotage the relationship when they assume, judge and expect certain things to happen. Getting off to a bad start makes everyone uneasy.
Both women discover their confidence wanes, and the relationship situation is eroding, but no one tries to fix it. The tension is strong, and both women are lost in their own thoughts. Before the night is over, they speak cordially but make brief contact with each other.

It is easy to get caught up in the drama which serves nobody and adds to the confusion. Here are 5 ways to deal with the mother- and daughter-in-law “elephant in the room.”

Transform Emotional Distance into Positive Interactions

At times, both women can simply be misguided in their thoughts and judgements of a situation. That is the best kept secret. Neither woman wants to upset the elephant in the room, so neither discusses any real issues or problems they have. Mothers- and daughters-in-law have individual fears, as well as desires.
Daughters-in-law want to control their lives and their children. Mothers-in-law feel the same way, but their son is grown up. Control becomes impossible, so the mother-in-law must see the changed playing field.

The mother-in-law fears losing her relationship with her son and grandchildren. She sometimes pushes for what she perceives as her rights, and she makes matters worse.
The daughter-in-law feels threatened and fights back with refusals to visit. Both women dig in their heels and ignore the man-in-the-middle’s suffering. Even when there are visits, if there is emotional distancing, little love is displayed.
Be open, honest and communicate with your daughter-in-law without assuming or judging. Don’t expect to gain all you want, but instead, appreciate what you get and more will flow to you.

Don’t Count the Time You Share with Your Grandchildren but Do Count the Love!

Nobody wants to make children unhappy, and kids want and deserve love from everyone. As much as we give and love our children, adding more love to their lives through other people is important.
We should understand that grandchildren lose the most when grandparents are not allowed to engage with them. Remember that we can’t forever control who our kids like or resonate with. When they are grown they may question our reasons for keeping grandma and papa at a distance from them.
Children ask many questions when they are young, but they ask more questions when they are older. They will not be deceived. Kids deserve all the love and attention they can get. Refuse to put them in the middle of your fights and arguments by keeping in mind that kids thrive on love and attention.

Let Parents Set the Boundaries

Parents should set boundaries and rules as well as times people can visit. Grandparents must be flexible about the restrictions and accept what they receive. With three daughters-in-law and one son-in-law, I have found that the more I accept the conditions the parents set, the more lenient the parents become.
That is a fact. The grandchildren tell me about their visits with their other grandmas and papas, and I cherish the conversation. I am sure they do the same about their visits with me.
Children are open and carefree, and they hold nothing back. They thrive in their open happy environment. The parents and grandparents have peace and are surrounded by the loving atmosphere.
This is the result of open communication, which we all strive to achieve, and the ability to share without jealousy. It turns gossip into discussions, judgements into tolerance and assumptions into trust. It is never perfect and has its flaws, but it is positive, honest and worth the effort.

Always Offer Praise in Some Form

Gossip hurts, demeans and causes unending hardships. Most of gossip is hearsay or half-truths. Even gossip that is true serves only to bring pain and misunderstanding. If you want people to speak kindly of you, you should speak gently of others. Muster the courage to stop gossip as soon as it begins.
You won’t have to eat your words or be embarrassed when someone repeats your indiscretion. Recall the adage that what we see in others may be rampant in us. I have often learned this lesson by committing the same mistake I criticized another for. It is unnerving to find the fault within one’s self – but very enlightening.

Work on Creating a Harmonious Relationship

In any harmonious relationship the interactions are easy, unguarded and contain more humor. The conversation is relaxed, the stress and anxiety are not present, and the subjects of conversation are varied and interesting. When the visit is over we are filled with a sense of joy. Maintaining a good relationship is for the benefit of all.
We can focus on what is good about each other, and learn to tolerate what we don’t like. Mothers-in-law can help with babysitting, cleaning the dishes after enjoying a meal or shopping with their daughter-in-law to again help with the children.

Offering to drive or pick something up is also helpful.

The daughter-in-law may offer to help with dishes, visit or spend a day or evening in an outing with the mother-in-law. In both situations, the women are enjoying and helping each other. Even if it is tense in the beginning of a relationship, put the effort into creating magic and forming a devoted bond. It is so beneficial for both women and therapeutic in so many ways.

The Changes Are Never What We Imagine

Don’t measure or imagine. Imagining is like assuming. There is only one you and nobody else like you. Your experiences, ideas, jobs and talents are unique, and your grandchildren benefit from this.
If you can admit that you love all your children the same, then you can trust that your grandchildren love all their grandparents. If you compare and measure then you will always distrust and feel loss. If you unconditionally love and are grateful for the love you have in your life, then you will never be disappointed.

If a mother-in-law has trust and faith in her son, it should give her the confidence to let go and let her son live his own life. She can learn to play a different role and find new interests to occupy her new-found time.

Life changes force us to play a different game with different rules. It can be fun if we are willing to play instead of lamenting the past and turning the game upside down.

Avoiding Daughter-in-Law Problems: Privacy Should Be Considered a Priority

It is important for the mother-in-law to take a step back and allow the couple privacy and space. A mother must consider and respect the fact that her son has a wife to consider. They are now forming their own household and their business is personal.

Probing into confidential affairs is unthinkable. Privacy should always be considered a priority and mothers-in-law should not interfere or ask their sons for information. Many mothers-in-law lament that their knowledge is completely ignored. Unfortunately, they must accept such occurrences as a part of life.

Build Up Your Daughter-in-Law’s Confidence

The lack of trust in the mother-in-law unintentionally hurts many mothers-in-law and sets the ground for disagreements. The wife perceives it as disloyal to her if her husband allows his mother’s influence to dominate the relationship. The mother is faulted if she encourages this behavior.

The best rule is to offer advice only when asked and only at the time one is asked. The son is committed to his wife. He has a place in his heart for both women but his life is continuing forward with a new woman by his side. Peace is achieved when this is respected. Daughters-in-law are insecure and find their confidence increases with less interference from the mother-in-law.

Who Sabotages the Relationship?

Parents on both sides, as well as siblings, can damage relationships by exuding pressure in the form of jealousy and competition. This can be accomplished when the mother of the bride exerts pressure on the daughter out of her jealousy of the mother-in-law/daughter-in-law relationship.

Some mothers have convinced their daughters to refrain from becoming too close to this woman. The mother-in-law’s daughter can place pressure on the mother to keep her distance with the daughter-in-law. Sisters-in-law in all combinations can be guilty of jealousy.

My own mother did not want me to be friendly with my mother-in-law. She wanted to keep track of the hours and minutes I spent with my mother-in-law. I finally had to refrain from telling her when I went to see my mother-in-law to keep peace with her. In research for my new book The Princess and The Queen, available soon, this is still a key problem.

Friends are huge culprits because they agree with us without considering if we are right or wrong. They want to cheer us up at any cost. Gossip is started along with assumptions and judgments which are wrong most of the time. We are creating a monster in our minds.

It is wiser to accept the differences and play as fairly as possible without expectations. Having no expectations allows you to always be pleased and never disappointed.

The Mother in Law Loses the Most in a Failing Relationship

The mother-in-law does have to give in the most because she loses the most if the relationship falls apart. At an early point in the relationship, daughters-in-law don’t value a mother-in-law and they are willing to sacrifice the relationship.

Mothers-in-law see the whole picture clearly and don’t want to jeopardize losing their sons or grandkids. These two losses are the genuine fears of the mothers-in-law. Being older and with more experience, mothers-in-law have a greater understanding of the importance of peace to maintain bonds.

The good news is that if they are successful, the daughter-n-law values their support and recognizes their importance in the family. This brings the relationship full circle and on firmer ground.

Enjoy a new role and play a different game.

Do you want to understand your mother-in-law or daughter-in-law then read my new book “THE PRINCESS AND THE QUEEN”. It is unique with universal appeal for women. The book uncovers the secrets of the relationship. It spans two generations and brings comfort and insight long after the wedding. Brides, mothers-in-law and bridal party as well as people marred many years will discover ways to improve their relationship. I began it as a daughter-in-law and finished it as a mother-in-law. There are over twenty stories about real women who shared their stories with me. I surveyed and interviewed hundreds of women for many years and wrote my book based on these findings. It is never too late to improve this relationship!
2 Books in 1 about the Hidden Secrets in the relationship
The Princess and The Queen by Pamela Reynolds
Published by Blooming Twig Books available on Amazon.com.
This double-sided book (one half for the mother-in-law
The other half for the daughter-in-law) answers these questions:
• Do you want to know what your mil/dil thinks?
• How personality, environment and living affect the relationship.
• Ideas and techniques to keep the relationship healthy.
• Learn how to solve problems before they appear or increase.
• You can makeover an existing poor relationship.
• Uncover the words and actions that improve the relationship.
• Learn how to manage interference and changes in a positive way.
• Create relationship harmony.
• When the daughter-in-law/ mother-in-law communicate families are happy.
• The content stories and reflections promote a positive relationship.
• Real women share their stories.
• I began the book as a daughter-in-law and finished it as a mother-in-law. It spans two generations

1

Are you trying to improve your relationship with your daughter-in-law? Do you want to create a better understanding and reduce tension? If these are a few of the questions that frequently enter your mind, then read on for some answers.

Mothers Are Always Mothers

I’d like to attempt to answer the question about why there is tension within the relationship. Mothers are always mothers, even when they become grandmothers. When our son marries, we often feel relegated to the back seat, second place and total background of his life. The sad truth is that this is the way life unfolds and it is a natural, necessary process. We cannot change this and must accept it.

The good part is our son will always have a place in his heart for us and he will always love us. If we accept his love, no matter how it filters our way, then we are not going to be as bothered with the changes.  

Change is a Huge Issue

At a time when our children are getting married, we are going through menopause. We are experiencing the empty nest syndrome, and the reality of retirement. We deal with illnesses we have acquired along our life’s path. The frosting on the cake may be our feelings of loss.

Transformation is difficult. However, life is not over and when we get through the thickets we see relief and a new existence unfolds. Like the butterfly, we must peel off the cocoon to make life alterations. We fear this because even new changes are difficult to cope with. We are comfortable within our current existence and don’t want to move forward, although we realize changes happen throughout our lives and are at the core of our existence.

I remember being at one son’s apartment helping him hang up curtains one week and within a short time, I was told to call before coming over. It is a part of life’s alterations even if I or others don’t like it.

Start the Relationship with Your Daughter-in-Law Early

Trouble begins at the start of a son’s relationship if a mother does not recognize the potential girlfriend as a possible future wife and daughter-in-law. Even if you have gotten off on a bad start to the relationship, it is still possible to rekindle it and evolve the bond into a happy relationship.

As difficult as letting go can be, a problematic relationship with your daughter-in-law is painful and full of stress and anxiety. I choose peace.

Respect the Boundaries

Mothers-in-law have a new playing field. They need to refrain from disregarding boundaries, respect rules – even if they don’t agree with them and think they are ridiculous. Your son loves this person. She is now his family. Stepping back a bit and recognizing the importance of his union and the onward cycle of life is crucial.

Mothers give their children strong roots of stability and growth. No one should cut those roots nor break them down. Daughters-in-law give their husbands wings to fly to new places and experience new beginnings and life itself. We do not clip the wings. How fortunate is the man-in-the-middle who is able to keep and nurture both wings and roots.

I have been studying this relationship for over 20 years and have found some things to be true. My surveys and investigations span two generations. I began my books as a daughter-in-law and finished them as a mother-in-law. It allowed me to discover both points of view, not only through my mind but through my heart.

Do you want to understand your mother-in-law or daughter-in-law then read my new book “THE PRINCESS AND THE QUEEN”. It is a unique book with universal appeal for all women. The book uncovers the secrets of the relationship. It spans two generations and will bring comfort and insight long after the wedding is over. Brides, mothers-in-law and bridal party as well as people marred many years will discover ways to improve their relationship.

I began it as a daughter-in-law and finished it as a mother-in-law. There are over twenty stories about real women who shared their stories with me. I surveyed and/or interviewed hundreds of women for many years and wrote my book based on these findings. It is never too late to improve this relationship! Please contact me at my e-mail below if you are interested.

2 Books in 1 about the Hidden Secrets

In the Mother-In-Law and Daughter-In-Law Relationship

The Princess and The Queen by Pamela Reynolds

is now published by Blooming Twig Books

 

It is available on Amazon.com.

This double-sided book (one half for the mother-in-law the other half for the daughter-in-law) answers these questions:

  • Do you know what your mother-in-law or daughter-in-law  thinks?
  • How our individualities, environments and life changes affect the relationship.
  • Ideas and techniques to keep the relationship on track.
  • Learn how to solve problems before they appear or increase.
  • You can do a makeover of an existing poor relationship.
  • Uncover the words and actions that improve the relationship.
  • Learn how you manage the interference and changes in a positive way.

This book helps create a happy atmosphere for both the mother-in-law and daughter-in-law.

  • The book promotes relationship harmony for all women.
  • When the daughter-in-law/ mother-in-law communicate the families are happy.
  • The content stories and reflections from the book promote a positive relationship.
  • Real women discuss their stories.
  • I began the book as a daughter-in-law and finished it as a mother-in-law. It spans two generations of meaningful research.

Contemplating marriage or married any number of years, this book, The Princess and The Queen, entertains enlightens and is a great Wedding or Shower gift.

Our Rebellious Hearts"What the soul knows is often  unknown to the man who has a soul. We are infinitely more than we think." Kahlil Gibran

"I realized that all the trouble I ever had about you came from some smallness or fear in myself."    Mary Haskell

"All cruelty springs from weakness.”    Seneca

"We are expression of earth, and of life - not separate individuals only. We cannot get enough away from the earth to see the earth and ourselves as separates. We move with its great movements and our growth is part of its great growth."    Kahlil Gibran

“True happiness is to enjoy the present, without anxious dependence upon the future, not to amuse ourselves with either hopes or fears but to rest satisfied with what we have, which is sufficient, for he that is so wants nothing. The greatest blessings of mankind are within us and within our reach. A wise man is content with his lot, whatever it may be, without wishing for what he has not.”    Seneca

There has been a tremendous amount of talk about mothers-in-law and daughters-in-law. The fascinating part is that nothing ever changes. I wrote a book on the mother-in-law daughter-in-law dilemma which took  over fifteen years of research. I interviewed people at the beginning of those years and at the end and I got the same results. To be honest, I was shocked.

Today's young people appear to be more computer literate, independent and outspoken. Yet when you mention a mother-in-law, their complaints and issues sound  the same throughout the ages. They are no less confident around their mothers-in-law than any other generation. Perhaps they are even less secure, given the confusion regarding one insignificant person, who appears to make them nervous. The mystery is they can't figure out why. ...continue reading "Rebellious Mothers-in-Law"

The  typical answers, which have some truth in them, are jealousy, fear, and their own insecurity towards their relationship with their husbands. Their possessive feelings towards their husbands, causes a resistance in them to accept their mother-in-law. Regardless of how any of us feel, mothers are mothers and they will likely always hold a connected bond with their daughters as well as their sons. Most women like to believe that only daughters stay close to their mothers. I call this surface bonds.

Mothers keep their bonds of affection for all of their kids, and young or old the love does not diminish.  The belief is that women stay bonded  to mom, but men somehow evolve into a new creature that stops caring about his beginnings. Many men likely under duress, leave a lot of space between themselves and their mothers, so as to alleviate any trouble with their wives.

Of course it is silly because if we looked into the future, or at life itself, we would realize that we will perhaps one day be at the other end of the stick. None of us think of that. We  assume we will  have our tiny babies, toddlers and young children under our spell forever. As older women will attest, time passes quietly but swiftly and things turn around. I have heard the same  rhetoric of  "how much better I would do things than my mother-n-law did." Probably you won't make the same mistakes, but you will forge ahead with your own errors, unwittingly unaware that you have done anything wrong.

Nobody plans on making problems for anyone least of all your son or daughter-in-law. The trouble is, if one has made trouble already, forgiveness is the only route that allows them on the track again. Of course we can skip the forgiveness, and rattle onward with confusion, distrust, uneasiness, fights, horrible interactions, and free time spent on rehashing everything that was said and done. Humans are great at overlooking their own transgressions. We give ourselves plenty of slack in reference to pain and blame. In the end we all are delivered fair amounts of stress, anxiety and worry.

Mothers-in-law need time to adjust. When a woman becomes a new mother, she frets and wants to be left alone so she can learn all the ways to take care of her baby. She doesn't want a lot of advice, at least not from the older generation. She gains her independence and eventually steers her own wheel. Likewise, a new mother-in-law must learn how to switch up  her own way of doing things. She no longer can interfere with her sons choices, nor stop by when she feels like it. Yes her son probably wouldn't care any more than her daughter-in-law worries if her own mother stops by. The trouble is the daughter-in-law wants her privacy, and deserves her privacy. Mothers-in-law need to respect the lines that are drawn.

This is easier said than done. If a mother has freely spoken to her child for over twenty years, it is difficult to expect her to suddenly learn how to keep her mouth quiet. Of course she needs to learn this, but give her some time and space to fall back, make mistakes and then learn to adjust. It is the changes and fear of the transformations that are likely taking place. The love is always solid but the alterations in the relationship are numerous. Changes require a lot of adjustments in action, words and emotional acceptance.

Calling men mommies boys, only makes the men put up a facade of separation from the mother. That in turn hurts the mother. We haven't changed the son's love for his mother. We have only caused him to hide his feeling and keep them undercover. That is silly as well as sad, when we don't place the same parameters on our own heartfelt associations. Just as we can't be forced to love someone, likewise we can't be forced to stop loving someone. The heart rebels.

How much time, effort, pain, fear and stress we needlessly place on our shoulders. There is room for one more person to love in this big world. We must have confidence in ourselves, trust in our own worth and not feel jealousy in the mother son relationship. Perhaps if we could get beyond  that, we would all learn to have serenity. Mothers-in-law are just as guilty of jealousy, as well as insecurity. But trusting they have a place in their son's heart, should give them peace.  Why do we want to spend our happy times, assessing what another says or does. In the end it is futile and pointless. The evaluation results always depend on the person doing the assessment more than what is the truth.

Mothers-in-law have a new playing field. They need to refrain from overstepping boundaries, respect rules that are set, even if they don't agree with them, or even if they think they are ridiculous. Respect and tolerance is key. Understanding how much your son loves this person is essential. They are his family now, and although you will always be a part  of his family, stepping back a bit and recognizing the importance of his union and the onward cycle of his life is crucial.

Most if not all mothers do not want to keep their sons locked away or stagnant. Allowing them to live the life they choose is not our decision to make, but it does necessitate that  we accept his decisions. Daughters-in-law who want peace, and honesty, must accept some of the fault in a failing relationship with their mothers-in-law. By understanding their role in the crises, they can alter their opinions, as well as stretch their thinking. By coming to realize that they can't just pretend their husband never had a mother, or that he can easily walk away from having her in his life, will afford a deeper revelation about life itself.

A daughter-in-law's fear and stress might be her own nervousness at taking the helm. Of course the daughter-in-law is up to it but she must have some faith in herself. None of us can control another, or not forever. If we wrap our treasure and hide it, how can we enjoy it ourselves. Bringing it into the light gives others the chance to experience some of the joy. By having our husband's interests in mind, we might offer a truce in any difficult situation.

Judging the mother-in-law too early in the game causes misconceptions. It would be like judging a child's temperament after the mother is leaving the child in your care. The screaming yelling and misbehaving child is under duress at the moment. It is not a good time to be judging him or her. I would suggest the mother-in-law may be at that same point in time, as the toddler.  She is under fire to accept so many changes that are definitely attuned with life and natural, but not easy. Perhaps a mothers slight temper tantrum is also quite natural. Give her time to adjust and make it as easy and as acceptable as possible because in the end she will come to understand, there are no other options.

Mothers-in-law should understand that their daughters-in-law are young, and have a lot to learn about the progression of life. Attempting to give them the fast pass doesn't work. They are vulnerable, are excited about their new beginning and want independence and freedom, to make their own choices. A mother-in-law has to allow her son and his wife to make mistakes, and learn from those mistakes. Interfering is out of the question. Perhaps their ridiculous idea might pan out better than you thought.Everyone is breaking new ground. We all react poorly at moments. Acting like  children is probably very common in adults of all temperaments. Whether we behave aggressively,  or passive aggressively, everyone needs forgiveness and kindness at times.

We all want to be understood regarding our feelings, which are not easy to express. How many mothers-in-law want to believe they are expressing a temper tantrum, and showing signs of jealousy. How many daughters-in-law want to believe they are possessive and jealous of their mothers-in-law. Both parties will get over the newness of it all, and release their own fears in time. When that future time comes, it would be nice to still have a worthwhile relationship. Trust me, it is an awesome treasure to have and well worth waiting for, or working towards. Tolerance, forgiveness, understanding and love will open the chrysalis to a new adventure that all will love and enjoy, if we will simply have faith that it is possible.

A man can be free without being great, but no man can be great without being free."     Kahlil Gibran

"Imagination sees the complete reality, - it is where past, present and future meet... Imagination is limited neither to the reality which is apparent - nor to one place. It lives everywhere. It is at a center and feels the vibrations of all the circles within which east and west are virtually included. Imagination is the life of mental freedom. It realizes what everything is in its many aspects ... Imagination does not uplift: we don’t want to be uplifted, we want to be more completely aware."    Kahlil Gibran

"When the hand of Life is heavy and night song-less, it is the time for love and trust. And how light the hand life becomes and how song-ful the night, when one is loving and trusting all." Anonymous

“He suffers more than necessary, who suffers before it is necessary.”    Seneca

"Say NO to the demands of the world. Say YES to the longings of your own heart."   Jonathon Lockwood

"Your work is not to drag the world kicking and screaming into a new awareness. Your job is to simply do your work...Sacredly, Secretly, and Silently...And those with 'eyes to see and ears to hear' will respond."    Unknown

Continually attempting to please others, is likely the most difficult job we all work at constantly. All our boasts about  not caring if someone likes it or not, are just nonsense. Deep down we want to make others happy. All of us work at making the grade, and becoming number one, in the eyes of another. What I have found is that it becomes impossible, to be the number one for any length of time. As hard as we work at it, eventually it wears us down, and I am not even sure others are totally aware of the game we are playing. They are too busy playing their version of it.

Most likely it begins at childhood, when we compete against our siblings for attention. Some of us find it easier to be people pleaders, but we all do it to some degree, even if we don't admit to it. If our parents like something special for dinner, then that is what we cook when they are coming over. We bask in our ability to please them, and we beam, when they compliment us. Of course we get a bit  rigid when we hear about their  pleasure at another siblings house. How petty of us we think, but the feelings creep in, or is it the threat of losing love.

Young kids depend on mom and dad, and so the ability to accept sibling rivals, is important. Maybe we never evolve out of that position. Instinctively we continue to strive to please.  This perhaps continues with our jobs and the boss. Technically the boss is also a provider for us, and important figure in our lives. Husbands and wives play another role, and without knowing it,  demand more of our attention.

We all like to satisfy, receive praise, and feel that we make a difference in the lives of others. I know it is probably impossible to be in first place, all the time. It is extremely difficult, to  maintain a level of denial, in order to cope with the pleasures of others. Simply stated, we can't be the perfect child forever. Finding our own lives is relevant. We can't be the need fulfilling spouse every second. Our own needs must be taken care of. We are never the perfect parent, sibling or friend. Those times when we fail, are the times we beat ourselves up, for not satisfying another.

Perhaps it is time to ask if it is so important to always gratify. Likely we have degrees of how much importance we place on this attitude. It is paramount to accept the fact, that we cannot always placate those we love. If we only see ourselves through the eyes of another, then we lose ourselves in their perception of us. How they view us is how we rate ourselves. Now we are under pressure to come through. It is far better to appreciate  who we are. Our version of self, is the most important measurement we can accept.

Most of us probably are not aware of the importance, another person places, on what we think about them. As much as we attempt to keep parents happy, our children are doing the same thing with us. Every time we produce a guilt ridden situation,  we have endorsed a "striving to please" job. It only leaves us distraught at our attempts to gratify. Perhaps parents are not placing such burdens on us. It may possibly be us, who desire to constantly gratify those we love.

I honestly believe that in the end, we are so beat down that we give up. This is sad, but sometimes a blessing. After coming to terms with the limits of our capacity, we begin to discover ourselves. We also realize that we start doing things for others out of love, real love, rather than to attain a false belief of love. Most likely parents are not forcing kids to please, and may not be aware of the power they hold over their children. Adult children might become aware, that their parents are also not theirs to control. Kids need to learn independence, and thankfulness for the favors parents bestow.

Once this is accomplished, we can live our lives in honesty, and in a more relaxed state. We stop striving to constantly delight, and begin paying more attention to needs and support. It perhaps also gives us time to aid others, outside our circle of family and friends. If we dwell constantly on what we must do for someone, in order to maintain a tenuous sense of position, it allots  little time, to helping another, out of charity.

I know there were many times in my life, that I did things out of duty. There was some love intertwined, but for the most part, it felt more like being compelled to do it. Maybe it was my own sense of duty, or maybe it was guilt put on my shoulders. Likely it was a bit of both. I guess it is a good thing when a person comes to the realization sooner, rather than later, because pressure is relieved and living begins.

We strive to be the perfect parents, or grandparents. Then we discover how effortlessly, another parent or  grandparent assists our child in a profound and important way. Accepting this is crucial, to our own peace of mind. We all want what is best for our kids and grandchildren. If we love them truly, then there is no problem in accepting and being grateful, for the support of others. Loving can mean allowing our most treasured gifts, the freedom to be liberated. Letting go is difficult, but upon release,  peace is acquired. We also might find the loved one returns often. There is a comforting revisit, due to the lessening of restrictions.

The more we hold on tightly to what we perceive as ours, the more they struggle for autonomy,  and to please us. We leave them in turmoil. The expectations others have for us, as well as the ones we place on others, can consume our lives. It is so strange to have the independence, and knowledge of the love of others, without strings attached. Love is so gentle, that it is without physical attributes, and thus can only be felt within the body and mind. It is impossible to enclose, or keep love confined to oneself. By allowing love the freedom to expand, it draws back to us and gives thanks.

Even at work, there can be many who deserve credit for their abilities. We are one of many on the job. In no way are we depleted by someone's fullness. Mothers and wives can love sons and husbands, without jealousy. Sisters-in-Law and brothers-in-law can love each other without competing. Siblings can understand that their parents love can be divided many times without any loss of love to them. Friends can accept the differences between each other, and the needs each individual fulfills. Grandparents can give unconditional love, without envy. I for one comprehend that letting go of demands, and competition, brings serenity. The empty space left from the lack of worry, is filled with more love. Serenity is far better than constant striving to please others. Life won't always make you happy, but living a meaningful life will bring you happiness.

Strive For Happiness"PEACE It does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble or hard work. It means to be in the midst of those things, and still be calm in your heart." Unknown

"When we seek to discover the best in others, we somehow  bring out the best in ourselves."    William Arthur Ward

"We often take for granted the very things that most deserve our gratitude."     Cynthia Oziek

 

Holiday Thoughts"I don't need a holiday or a feast to feel grateful for my children, the sun, the moon, the roof over my head, music, and laughter, but I like to take this time to take the path of thanks less traveled."    Anonymous

"The Holiday season is a perfect time to reflect on our blessings, and seek out ways to make life better for those around us."    Terri Marshal

The holidays are coming and you can already feel the anxiety. We all have it yet think we are the only ones sensing the stress. Some of us hide our fear better than others but without a doubt none of us like being criticized or gossipped about  when the occassion is over. In truth our reality differs from what another experiences. None of us comprehend the  total meaning  behind words actions or gifts  and we fret about our own situation unaware of the bombs we drop on others.

Attempt to experience a good time without negative thinking before it begins. Don't poison your holiday with negative expectations. Setting yourself up for a  lousy time will already define your experience. Remember that as much as you want a good time so does the rest of the family. Hurting your mother-in-law or daughter-in-law creates a disastrous happening for the son or husband. It takes only one person to make or break the happiness. It is your choice so choose wisely. It reflects on all of us. Every Holiday is different and can't really be repeated. Love can always be present and repeated time and again. Following are a few hints derived from  my books and my  thoughts on the subject and others feelings about it.

AFTER THE DIVORCE, DON’T THROW THE FAMILY OUT WITH THE EX-HUSBAND
1. Take control of the situation at the beginning. Trashing your MIL in front of the kids will fuel distrust in your kids. If you stopped loving dad and grandma you just might stop loving them one day.
2. When your marriage has ended, the kids are dislodged and dealing with many changes. The grandparent relationship becomes more significant to them, offering some stability.
3. Put aside fear, doubts, anger and especially revenge. It only leads to dumping more hurt upon yourself and your kids.
4. Talk to your MIL and explain to her how much your kids value her. Allow her to continue her relationship with them. In this way you avoid revenge which is a contagious disease that infects everyone
5. Your child’s happiness is more important than convincing your MIL she is wrong. There are no winners or losers in any confrontation. Kids suffer defeat every time a family member is absent from their lives.
6. Generating bonds of respect with your MIL will keep your ex-husband more involved with the kids. Bonds of love are always more difficult to break.
7. Your MIL loves her grandchildren and she will treat you with respect if it means her connection to her grandchildren will continue.
8. Be patient and give your MIL time to heal. Being non-judgmental allows you to heal and have some support from your MIL. The MIL, DIL relationship is like any other. It requires time and effort.
9. With tolerance and acceptance, the barriers both women have constructed will break down. We can’t fight with someone who is just not taking the bait and fighting back.
10. In the end it is wise to remember you, your ex-husband, MIL, and children are part of a large quilt which includes all of you. Your kids have roots that are tangled with each family member. Damaging any parts of their roots destroys pieces of their foundation. Keep kids healthy and strong in mind and body. Do what it takes and strive for peace.

Kids can be jealous of step kids and especially half siblings. Kids resent step parents disciplining them and one must question fairness when their own kids are involved. Kids exhibit more anger due to numerous stresses of mixed homes, many parents and disciplinarians and more kids to compete with. Be consistent, don't compare, attempt to be on the same page, and always give respect time and love. Don't fight in front of kids and never talk about the other parent or allow the step parent to do this as it will only hurt the child. Instill rules with meaningful consequences and provide choices. Willingly accept support from extended family members; You don't want to cut your kids roots and thus destroy the plant. Kids are sensing a loss of family otherwise.

Reflections for Mothers-in-Law
Remember your daughter-in-law has a family, too. She cherishes spending time with them holiday central, and be thankful to share it with people you love.

Your daughter-in-law may anticipate visiting her family on the holidays. She might be more anxious to see them if they live at a distance. Try to give of yourself. When all is said and done, we remember who did what for us quicker than who gave what to us. It is fun to visit with someone throughout the year. The holidays are only a short period of time. It is the people who make the holiday special.You cannot compete with your daughter-in-law‟s mother. You can become a significant ally to your daughter-in-law. Promote your own relationship of family love with her.

Each holiday is unique in itself. It is not possible or necessary to repeat a holiday experience. Embrace each holiday. They have their own distinct moments. Give unconditionally, and you will not be disappointed. Equating the gifts from your daughter-in-law or mother-in-law to the value she places on your worth is a mistake. Most of us choose a gift we would prefer for ourselves and one we can afford. Holiday traditions change, and are a part of life. When a child starts school it is change and when a child marries it is  change. Bear with each other regarding the changes. Join in the festivities.

Reflections for Daughters-in-Law
Lend a helping hand when possible, and remember to value the person who donates his or her time and effort for you. Make an effort to visit with your mother-in-law at other times during the year. This is especially important if you do not get to spend the holi-days with her.

Remember to cherish your mother-in-law‟s traditions. They were developed over numerous years and possess profuse memories. Be fair in dividing your time and your husband‟s with your respective families. Your mother-in-law deserves equal attention. Invite your mother-in-law for a holiday as you would your own mother. She is your husband‟s mother.

Do not equate your mother-in-law‟s or daughter-in-law's gifts to how she cherishes you.
Do not anticipate quantity from your holidays or from your gifts. Search for quality.
Accept your mother-in-law‟s invitations to holiday meals whenever you are able.
Your family‟s traditions and your husband‟s family traditions will differ. Accept and enjoy these differences. Have faith that love is shared and celebrated every day, not just on a holiday.

"Having somewhere to go is HOPE, Having someone to love is FAMILY, having both is a BLESSING."    Anonymous

"My idea of Christmas, whether old-fashioned or modern, is very simple: loving others. Come to think of it, why do we have to wait for Christmas to do that?" Bob Hope

"A lovely thing about Christmas is that it''s compulsory, like a thunderstorm, and we all go through it together." Garrison Keillor, Leaving Home

“Don’t spoil Christmas Day by anticipating how it will be. Let is unfold as it does, and be grateful for whatever comes.”     Toni Sorenson

“The spirit of Christmas is found when we lift the load of others.”     Toni Sorenson

Discouragement“Never say that you can't do something, or that something seems impossible, or that something can't be done, no matter how discouraging or harrowing it may be; human beings are limited only by what we allow ourselves to be limited by: our own minds. We are each the masters of our own reality; when we become self-aware to this: absolutely anything in the world is possible."     Mike Norton

“Never let someone who draws a line and say you can't cross it intimidate you. Don't be discouraged when someone says you can't do it. You might have been the only one sent to do it.”     Israelmore Ayivor

"Belief is truth held in the mind; Faith is a fire in the heart."    Unknown

"The christian life is not a constant high. I have to go to God in prayer with tears in my eyes and say oh God forgive me or help me."    Billy Graham

It is getting closer to that time of year when everyone begins thinking about what is wrong in their lives. It is the holiday season, the time of year we quantify our happiness by how our gains measure up against another s. The spouse is in jeopardy and the kids though we love them, can be disappointing. We wonder if we created the mess or if the chaos simply arrives around the holidays. We spruce ourselves up and have faith we'll get through it without too many obstacles. How sad to have to 'get through' some enjoyable times.

All I can say is if you begin the holiday season convinced it is  going to be hurtful and depressing, then most likely it will be. The thing is we search for what we believe is there. So if you have faith it will be a disaster then you will eventually find it in people's attitudes with you or with the many issues that evolve from being together with family.

In order to have a good time one must go into it with the approach that I will have a great time regardless of any pessimistic people. You have to embrace the good that you see and attempt to understand the bad. If you come to terms with the injuries others have cause you, you become aware of why it happens. This provides the option of laying it to rest. You see it isn't always about us although we most definitely believe it is. The alternative is to find blame in us.

People's thoughts and feelings influence their every mood. The trouble is sometimes we already have our reasons and mindset before we even come up against any oppositions. If we are attending aunt Deirdra's dinner and start thinking about what a horrible cook she is and how loudly she talks and how many comments she makes to everyone, then we already have a negative outlook for the occasion. We plan to have a bad day.

As much as we deny it we might be sabotaging our own good time. Recall something about the dinner you like even if it is the bread, rolls or desert. contemplate the guest list and plan on sitting beside some people you like. Switch the game plan and instead of remaining quiet and frowning and pouting, offer a compliment about the meal, table setting or decorations. Maybe aunt Deirdre puts effort into creating an atmosphere of welcome and nobody takes notice. Perhaps she will be pleased with the compliment and settle down to a more pleasant tone of voice.

So many times we blame others for our own foul mood yet  never comprehend our degree of fault. After any gathering we go home and review the entire evening and make constant judgements. We can recall spoken words, gestures slights insults and other negative issues that occurred. Including myself, I don't  understand why we don't remember the kindness and gentle retorts and laughter from that day. It just has to do with our focus and where we are placing our concentration. Picking apart the day for the rotten pieces is pessimistic. Why not cherish the good laugh.

Anybody who is already assuming a certain outcome will likely receive that end. We have created our own reality. If we want to get along with others we have to search for those things in them that we like and or admire. That will create a happier environment. How simple it is yet not very often acted upon. I suppose when we asses the issue others can't measure up to us, our friends or family. We must find fault. Reflecting on it long enough would make one laugh at the silliness of it. Jealousy, competition and calculations rear their ugly heads again. Trouble is we are the losers before we play the game.

If we poison our thoughts, expect the worst, and shut our senses down then no light of pleasure and good will is able to enter. Later, upon contemplation, we really must blame ourselves. Baiting our opponent and causing disagreements is our offense. We can't lose our way as we travel through a myriad of roads and challenges. We can't spend so much time observing others and their gains. The happy person is the one who depends the least on what he has. Even when we love we must not hold tightly and hang on. We should be thankful for the love received and be aware that it is a treasure bestowed but not acquired to be kept restricted.

If love is kept a prisoner in a box  then it will become infected and die. If it is allowed to freely travel it will encompass many others and will grow to unlimited heights. Fear is the crippling culprit. We all fear releasing what we love, worrying it won't come back and we will lose it. Hence we can understand why mothers-in-law fear daughters-in-law and why daughters-in-law have so much anxiety over mothers-in-law, why siblings fight with siblings, and why friends separate their friends because they  worry about the loss to another worthier person so they believe.

If we are anxious about attending a family even or hosting one, we must consider the fact that others might be fearing the event as much as we are. If we let go of the preconceived notions we have which most likely have a bit of truth and a bit of embellishment we just might release a lot of unnecessary troubles. I would hate to face some judgement calls on myself. So unless you are without any blame transform your irrational attitudes and remember what is really important and meaningful about your life.

If you  enjoy drama then you will create it with negative emotions entering the happy environment. Perhaps you will win and manifest the worst holiday gathering ever. Is that your mission, to make others unhappy and destroy everyone's good time? If you want instead to just have a happy moment of peace and serenity transformation is in order. Set your thoughts on the amount of people in your life that you are happy about. There is no need to rate them into classes. They all serve a purpose and we find as we travel through life many times our appraisal of them  changes. It makes no difference,  because it is all about love and love has no measurement and no conditions it simply loves. We can love more than one person and we wont' deplete the love but increase it.

Perhaps we need to believe in our own worth. We are lovable. We have meaning as does our lives. We probably are the maker of our own troubles or triumphs. So I suppose it is time we made a solid effort to promise ourselves we will have happy holiday times. Let go of grudges and you release mounds of stress. Hang on to it and you are bound so tightly nothing will penetrate. Love without chaining it and you will find so much more of love out there than you ever thought was possible.

"Depression begins with disappointment. When disappointment festers in our soul, it leads to discouragement."    Joyce Meyer

"I think a big test we all face in life on a regular basis is that discouragement test. Life's not always fair, but I believe if you keep doing the right thing, God will get you to where you are."   Joel Osteen

"Not only is our love for our children sometimes tinged with annoyance, discouragement, and disappointment, the same is true for the love our children feel for us."    Bruno Bettelheim

"Nobody else can make us discouraged; it is a choice that we alone make when facing disappointments."  Dr. Charles Stanley

"(Discouragement) Can be temporary–or it can destroy our life. The choice is ours. If we refuse to deal with discouragement head-on, we are opening the door for it to completely dominate our life."      Dr. Charles Stanley

Value"Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that."    Martin Luther King.

“Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.”    Plato

“A life spent making mistakes is not only more honorable but more useful than a life spent doing nothing.”    George Bernard Shaw

From Book "Mother-In-Law Daughter-In Law Dilemma"

Consideration should always be granted to another person. A mother-in-law‟s fairness to her daughter-in-law is out of respect for her son, and a daughter-in-law‟s fairness to her mother-in-law is out of respect for her husband. We need to saturate our hearts with appreciation, deliberation, and honor. Treating another person decently or compassionately is demonstrating regard. It is acceptable to give others respect, but it is necessary to first be aware of anothers existence.

There are times when we simply do not see others or their needs and desires. Becoming mindful of other people and their wishes can plant the seeds for nurturing and respect. Many times we are not cognizant of the countless behaviors we exhibit that offend others. We hurt others by our actions or what we say. It requires practice to focus attention on others. Tuning into another‟s circumstance of the mind permits us to empathize with what they might be pondering or feeling. ...continue reading "Value Has A Place"

A mother-in-law might be unaware that her daughter-in-law has been up all night with a crying baby. If a daughter-in-law shares this information with her mother-in-law, the mother-in-law can show consideration for and assist her daughter-in-law. A mother-in-law can simply be a sounding board for her daughter-in-law's com-plaints. A mother-in-law can allow her daughter-in-law to defuse her frustration by simply listening to her concerns.

A daughter-in-law should key into her mother-in-law's complaints. Her mother-in-law may not always feel well. A daughter-in-law might consider all of this before judging her mother-in-law's frame of mind. Sometimes through common sense we demonstrate respect. Helping a daughter-in-law cope with her children is considerate. Helping a moth-er-in-law clear off a table is appreciative. The little things mothers-in-law and daughters-in-law do for each other creates the bonds of respect they have for each other. Showing respect is also necessary when discussing our dissimilar opinions. We can reject our mother-in-law‟s concepts for decorating, spending money, or child rearing without rejecting her. We can never be too sure that our way is the better way for doing things just because it is the current thinking.

Mothers-in-law can reject their daughters-in-law's concepts for working, spending money, dressing, or taking care of the children without rejecting their daughters-in-law. Give your daughter-in-law credit for venturing into the unknown and attempting to apply a new concept. You may feel it necessary to wear lace to a wedding; your daughter-in-law may wear pants or a skirt. You cannot tell her how to dress.

Research shows there are complaints from daughters-in-law when mothers-in-law visit unexpectedly. Daughters-in-law prefer formal invitations. Some mothers-in-law complain that they never get invited to their daughter-in-law‟s house for dinner. If they do get invited, the meal is thrown together from a box. Other mothers-in-law stated that if they just dropped by unexpectedly, they got a cold shoulder. They did not feel welcome. Some mothers-in-law felt like intruders.

The daughters-in-law complained that they worked a full-time job and had children to contend with. If they invited their mothers-in-law, they did not cook too much because they are not “gourmet cooks.” Some daughters-in-law stated that their mothers-in-law stopped by unexpectedly to spy on them and to catch them and their house in complete disarray. One daughter-in-law stated, “She just wants to check up on my house-cleaning habits and cooking ability.”

The truth for both mothers-in-law and daughters-in-law lies someplace in the middle. If a mother-in-law or a daughter-in-law is trying to find imperfections, then they will easily find them without much effort. There are imperfections in the best of us, but also worthiness in the worst of us. Respect requires the ability to ignore anothers shortcomings. If we display appreciation for another, we might be more considerate in our judgments and opinions. By being aware of someone's struggles, we may connect on a higher level with that person and recognize his or her worth. If we appreciate another‟s challenges, it may conceivably allow us to appreciate them.

The daughter-in-law should not be expected to produce a gourmet meal. Many mothers-in-law agreed that boxed pizza was just fine as long as they got an invitation to come over.  They felt the company was the best. Likewise, the daughters-in-law agreed that an unexpected visit now and again was okay, provided there was a refrain of criticism. Both factions wished for pleasant conversation.

“Nobody as long as he moves about among the currents of life, is without trouble.”
Carl Jung

"While on a walk one day, I was surprised to see a man hoeing his garden while sitting in his chair. What laziness! I thought. But suddenly I saw leaning against his chair, a pair of crutches. The man was at work despite his handicap. The lessons I learned about snap judgments that day have stayed with me for years now.

VIGNETTE

Cassie was an easy woman to talk to. She began her rendition of her mother-in-law, Nancy. Cassie had been married to Sean for over ten years. Cassie had a twinkle in her eyes every time Nancy‟s name was mentioned. Cassie recalled and retold a couple of funny and interesting stories. Her lush plants were obvious, and Cassie recalled one particular account about her plants and her mother-in-law. Cassie began her account with an amusing smile.When Cassie and Sean were first married, they lived a short distance from Nancy. Cassie remembered how busy she was at that time with young children. Cassie loved plants, but she admitted, at times, she forgot to water them. Her mother-in-law was had a green thumb.

When Nancy would stop by for a visit, she would pull out all of the brown, dead leaves and water Cassie‟s plants. Nancy would then instruct Cassie on how to take better care of them. If Nancy came unexpectedly and Cassie had piles of laundry all over the kitchen floor, Nancy just stepped over them and made her way to a chair without blinking an eye or losing a step. Nancy never mentioned the dirty laundry. Cassie laughed. Nancy would invite Cassie to lunch. Nancy always chose the restaurant, but she allowed Cassie to have veto power. Cassie recalled using her veto power only once. Nancy had chosen a fish restaurant, and Cassie hated fish. That particular time they chose a restaurant they both agreed on.

Cassie always had three plants hanging in the den by the window, full of brown leaves and drooping green ones. Cassie mentioned her busy schedule. She drew attention to the three plants and recollected how they were looking about as attractive as they had the day her mother-in-law decided to come for an unexpected visit.  She called Cassie the day before she planned on visiting. Cassie hung up the phone and studied her three sick plants. Cassie was not in the mood for an instruction, so she marched to the garden shop and bought three plants just like her dying ones,  and replaced them.”
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The next day, Cassie hung up the plants, picked up the house, and waited for her mother-in-law to arrive. When Nancy walked into the front room and spotted the fully green plants, she remarked how beautiful they were. Nancy then turned to her daugh-ter-in-law and said, “You must have just bought them." Cassie was shocked. She stared at her mother-in-law, and then they both burst out laughing. For the rest of the visit, if either woman mentioned the plants, they had another laugh.

Cassie spoke with love about Nancy. Cassie said how Nancy always went on vacation with them. Nancy would babysit while Cassie and Sean went out by themselves. The only drawback to having Nancy on vacation was that she had to sit in the front seat of the car with Sean. Nancy would get car sick if she didn't sit up front, although Cassie had never seen Nancy get carsick. Cassie chuckled. Her amusing stories were inspiring. They proved that the mother-in-law and daughter-in-law could manage a compatible relationship with honesty, understanding, respect, and a dose of humor.

"Never look down on anybody unless you’re helping him up.”
The Reverend Jesse Jackson

"It is not good for all your wishes to be fulfilled; through sickness; you recognize the value of health, through evil; the value of good; through a hunger; satisfaction; through exertion, the value of rest."    Greek book of wisdom

The crosses people bear are seldom in plain sight."
Annette Ashe

“The bond that links your true family is not one of blood, but of respect and joy in each others life.”    Richard Bach

"Peace cannot be kept by force. It can only be achieved by understanding."
Albert Einstein

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